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date: 27 November 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the consolidation of New Zealand’s mixed-member proportional (MMP) electoral system since the first MMP election in 1996. It has three sections: the first examines whether the change to MMP has achieved the goals of electoral reformers or confirmed the fears of its opponents; the second draws on longer-term historical analysis to assess the fit between the MMP system and the cleavage structure of New Zealand’s electoral politics and its party system; and the third provides some evidence from individual-level opinion and behavior since 1996, notably by outlining the attitudinal foundations of choice in the 2011 referendum that confirmed that New Zealand would retain the MMP system.

Keywords: MMP, New Zealand, party system, referendum, electoral reform, PR, FPTP, government

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